FLAGS PREVENT N.TECHNOLOGY POLE After recording the fastest lap in the second free practice session this morning, N.Technology's James Thompson was looking strong to compete for one of the top-spots in today's FIA World Touring Car ...
FLAGS PREVENT N.TECHNOLOGY POLE
After recording the fastest lap in the second free practice session this morning, N.Technology's James Thompson was looking strong to compete for one of the top-spots in today's FIA World Touring Car Championship's (WTCC) qualifying at Oschersleben, Germany.
The Alfa Romeo 156 was quick from the outset, recording the fastest time to lead the field by 0.051s early on. As the track and air temperature rose, the former double British Touring Car Champion registered a total of 12 laps and a best time of 1:36.620, putting him in ninth place. His time was just 0.329s behind pole sitter Gabriele Tarquini (SEAT Sport).
The 30-minute session was briefly red-flagged due to an incident involving SEAT Sport's Michel Jourdain when he lost control of his car. With just over five minutes remaining qualifying continued and Thompson was one of the first out on track in a bid to improve his lap time. Heavy traffic and yellow flags, however, meant he was unable to improve.
Thompson's team-mate Olivier Tielemans, meanwhile, was going well in the sister Alfa Romeo, climbing up to 12th place at one stage. The Dutchman's fastest lap time of 1:37.136 put him in 17th place for tomorrow's first of two races at the German circuit.
James Thompson, car number 15 "There just weren't enough clean laps towards the end and too many yellow flags, one on the last run and traffic as well. If I just repeated the time from this morning, I would have been on pole so I'm sure I could have definitely been in the top three this afternoon."
Olivier Tielemans, car number 16
"On the one side I feel pretty happy because I feel that I'm improving myself. You spend the whole season developing and today, for the first time, I developed the car's set-up on my own.
"It's going to be tough tomorrow. The top-20 are all within one second, so you can imagine how close it is going to be in the race. We will try our best."
Andrew Muller, Team Manager
"We are really fast but if you read the laps you can see that we have 11 cars within 0.4s so it is like a lottery in the last lap in qualifying."